Dental hygiene graduates continue to achieve and exceed high standards

08 July 2015

Scoring above the national average in all categories of the board exam isn't really news anymore. For ten consecutive years, the DH diploma grads have scored above the national average on the certification exam. Ten years of continuous outstanding performance is no coincidence, it is now considered normal.

"We set high standards for our students," says Dr. Sharon Compton, director of the Dental Hygiene Program at the U of A. "So when results like this happen, we are all so proud because we know the students work hard, and their above average exam results are proof."

The National Dental Hygiene Certification Examination has five categories: assessment and diagnosis, foundations, implementation, planning and evaluation, and professionalism, all of which are a reflective of what they take in their program. The exam results are also categorized into the domains of knowledge/comprehension, application, and critical thinking and again, all scores were above the national average.

Compton credits three aspects when reflecting on the students' performance - a strong foundation based on the pre-professional study requirements, quality teaching staff, and dedicated and gifted students. Prior to being admitted to the program, students demonstrate an ability to manage a rigorous course load and then with the excellent teaching staff who are committed to delivered a high quality education, the result is graduates who perform and achieve above national standards.

"The University of Alberta is recognized as an excellent program and I am very proud to have this further validation through receipt of the national exam results."

On average, the diploma program has 42 students admitted each year.